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driving straight from Denver airport to Manitou Springs?

Lossiemouth, United...
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driving straight from Denver airport to Manitou Springs?

Hi, we are flying into denver international from the uk, arriving around 8pm. Is it a straightforward drive to manitou springs? We are hoping tobook into the America's Best Value Inn for a few nights, but are just a bit wary of too long a drive after a long flight! Would be nice to just drive to the area and get settled though, rather than having to stop nearer to Denver for one night... Thoughts?

Thanks in advance :-)

Breckenridge...
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1. Re: driving straight from Denver airport to Manitou Springs?

Drive is basic and probably will not be crowded at that time of night. Only possibility of delay is snow on I-70 which is not overly typical but no mention of when you are coming.

Drive time: plan on 1 hr 30 min - 1 hr 45 minutes.

If you arrive at 8pm, i assume by the time you get thru airport, luggage, (customs??) to car rental company, check-out...you would probably be on the road by 9:30pm, which would have you arriving Manitou probably a little after 11pm.

In terms of whether to drive or stay in Denver....???? Probably best for you to rely on previous experiences with long flights and how you felt immediately after (tired or buzzed), also taking in to account time zone changes, starting a drive at 9:30pm MST.

Even if you choose Denver, not a bad option. Get to a hotel quickly, relax, sleep... get up in the morning and enjoy the drive down to Colorado Springs area, perhaps stopping by Air Force Academy on the way down or taking the opportunity to explore some Denver sights that day then heading down to Manitou later in the afternoon. Plus, even if you get to Manitou on the 1st night, I assume you would go out sighseeing anyhow...so may not be much of a rush to get to Manitou to just wake up and leave to head out. Just a thought.

If you are coming at a slow time, see how late the Inn stays open and then make a decison when you land and phone them. I am sure someone would still be answering the phone around 8:30pm when you are waiting around for your luggage and had a better idea of how you feel.

Matt

Fruita, Colorado
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2. Re: driving straight from Denver airport to Manitou Springs?

Hi, we just had a recent discussion about this on TA - you might want to read those postings. tripadvisor.com/…45970530

It's not a bad drive if the weather is good but if you are tired out an inexpensive hotel in Denver might start the trip out better than driving in the dark through unfamiliar terrain.

Colorado Springs...
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3. Re: driving straight from Denver airport to Manitou Springs?

I frequently take the BA flight LHR to DEN and then drive to my home at the north end of Colorado Springs, 15 miles from Manitou Springs. The drive takes me 1:45 hr, taking Pena Bvd. from the airport to I-70, after 2 miles turn-off onto I-225 south, to I-25 South and to US 24 exit in Colorado Springs west to Manitou Springs. I suggest you do not take the E-470 toll road from near the airport. At that time of the day, it is not much faster, but is expensive with a rental car, because the rentall car companies charge somethig $US25 for handling the paperwork for the toll collection, which is fully electronic (no cash or credit card payment along the road possible)

Now, if you have never been to Denver (1,610m) or Colorado Springs (2,400m) and you don't know how you will adjust to such a sudden altitude change, I would advise you to spend the first night in one of the many hotels at the airport, get a good night's sleep. The easiest way is to take the hotel shuttle bus from the airport to the hotel, the next morning take the bus back to the terminal pick up your rental car and drive on. The hotel shuttle busses in Denver are free.and most run quite frequently until late into the night.

When will you be travelling? Starting in March, there will be a major 12 miles construction site along I-25 from 17 Miles north of Colorado Springs( town of Monument) . That woul be another reason for doing the trip in the morning, beause much of the highway widening to 6 lanes will be done at night.

Lossiemouth, United...
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4. Re: driving straight from Denver airport to Manitou Springs?

Thank you all for the info, very useful.

Regarding the toll roads, I did not know there were electronic toll roads, so this is valuable news! Are there others in the state we should be aware of?

- we are travelling the following route-

Denver, Colorado Springs, Alamosa, Durango, Telluride, Ouray, Montrose, Grand Junction, Glenwood Springs, Grand lake, RMNP, Estes Park, Boulder, back to Denver.

Thanks in advance, and a happy new year :)

Colorado Springs...
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5. Re: driving straight from Denver airport to Manitou Springs?

The extension of the E-470 runs from near the Denver airport to Louisville (between Boulder and Denver). Unless you really look for it, you won't wind up on it. But along the US 36 regular highway from Boulder to Denver, closer to Denver, there is a HOV Lane (High Occupancy Volume , I believe this stands for) that is also a partial toll road. Just avoid this. It does look inviting, but can be expensive.

Other than that, no other toll roads along yout itinerary. Enjoy your trip.

Edited: 02 January 2013, 04:14
Colorado
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for Western Australia
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6. Re: driving straight from Denver airport to Manitou Springs?

As someone who flies from Perth, Australia to Colorado once or twice a year, I strongly recommend you do NOT drive on your day of arrival.

Even if you're used to driving on the right, it takes a few days to adjust from left side to right side, and adjusting during a lengthy drive from DIA to Manitou potentially in the dark, and in unfamiliar territory, is definitely not the way to do it.

Driving after such a long flight is remarkably similiar to driving while intoxicated; your reaction time is affected, and you're putting yourself and more importantly, others, at risk.

I used to drive as soon as my feet hit the ground in Colorado Springs, even though my destination was less than 20 minutes away. Through experience (and perhaps age) I've realized how stupid that was.

Get some rest before you head out. Arrive Alive.

Edited: 02 January 2013, 13:11
Colorado
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7. Re: driving straight from Denver airport to Manitou Springs?

PS -

If the Denver hotel option doesn't suit, you might consider taking a shuttle to COS and then picking up your rental the next day from a local car rental like Enterprise, who will pick you up at your hotel. This could save you beaucoup money in airport taxes as well.

Or, you could do the same in the Denver area, and collect from an off airport rental agency up there. I do this all the time and it works better than you might expect.

Most car rental agencies will let you drop off at the airport upon departure; some don't charge a fee, other do, all depends on who/what/when/where.

Enjoy my home state (safely).

8. Re: driving straight from Denver airport to Manitou Springs?

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